La Mission Haut-Brion, A Chateau With True Soul

by Paige Donner (all photos copyright 2017) Château La Mission Haut-Brion’s chapel for me sums up the essence of the property. It has been for centuries, and still is, a family home. A home where people have worshipped, where they … Continue reading

Dinner At Château Latour Bordeaux Grand Cru Classé en 1855

Bordeaux, June 18, 2017  by Paige Donner  (all photos copyright 2017) On a hot summer evening in the Médoc’s Pauillac, Bordeaux guests arriving for the 1855 Grands Crus Classés dinner held this year at Château Latour were greeted with a … Continue reading

Three French Wines For Thanksgiving: Fixin, Fat Bastard and Colombelle

Thanksgiving is here and it’s time for feasting. As a nation, we have surely earned it this year with all the election stress. Now it’s time to relax with loved ones over the long weekend and enjoy good food,  home … Continue reading

Episode 20 Paris GOOD food + wine by Paige Donner host-producer

Paige Donner, Host-Producer of Paris GOOD food + wine brings you Episode 20 in Season 3 of the show available on Soundcloud, iTunes, Stitcher and TuneIn Radio. Also available on the Podcast Channel Network App (iOS and Android). Episode 20 … Continue reading

on iTunes – Episode 16 Paris GOOD food+wine Paige Donner Host-Producer

by Paige Donner This episode 16 of Paris GOOD food+wine  focuses on Wine Tourism in two of France’s most famous wine regions: Burgundy and Bordeaux. For many people passionate about wine, Burgundy remains the El Dorado of fine wines. And … Continue reading

Corton & Corton-Charlemagne #bourgogneGJB

2016 brought spectacular sunny spring weather throughout the Grands Jours de Bourgogne. Save for the last day, Friday (my 4th straight day of tasting many of the world’s best wines – more strenuous than perhaps it appears).  Lots of people … Continue reading

Grands Jours de Bourgogne – Meursault & Volnay

Saving the best for last… the 5th day of #bourgogneGJB included tastings of Meursault and Volnay.  It was my fourth day of tasting some of the best wines of the world and it felt, truly, like an embarrassment of riches. … Continue reading

#bourgogneGJB Mercurey + Jeunes Talent

My 3rd day of the Grands Jours Bourgogne featured a tasting spotlighting Mercurey producers and another featuring Young Talent.  It’s also the day that features the best lunch by far, put on by Chef Didier Denis and his team. A … Continue reading

Beaune Fresh Market – Easter Weekend en Bourgogne

Pictures tell a thousand words… A little sightseeing in Beaune’s Saturday fresh market at the end of #bourgogneGJB   All photos © Paige Donner 2016  @localfoodwine  @localfoodwine #ParisFoodAndWine App

Château du Clos de Vougeot

Tuesday’s tastings #bourgogneGJB @ the Château du Clos de Vougeot. All photos copyright Paige Donner 2016 Classified historic monument set in the middle of this most prestigious Burgundian enclosed vineyards. The artwork, the wine museum, ancient pressoir and the grounds … Continue reading

Chateau de Pommard, Bourgogne

A few snapshots of Château de Pommard, recently acquired by Michael Baum. Featured also in the photos are his winemaker, Emmanuel Sala and his Chief Commercial Officer, Ann Feely. Listen to their upcoming feature interviews on #Paris GOODfood+wine airing on … Continue reading

Get The APPs #ParisFoodAndWine & #BordeauxFoodAndWine – Now In App Store and Google Play

Get The #ParisFoodAndWine App !! Now live in the iTunes Store Click on the App Store Images  Paris Food And Wine brings you what’s best in food, drinks, restaurants, excursions, nightlife, hotels and vacation accommodations in the City of Lights. … Continue reading

Tasting – Le Grand Auxerrois à Paris

Held at the restaurant that Wine Spec recently named Paris’ best, Les Climats (Paris’ 7th arr), this tasting showcased gorgeous Burgundian wines that often don’t get enough attention… I’m talking Irancy, Saint-Bris, Chitry, Epineuil, Coulanges-la-Vineuse, Tonnerre, Aligoté and Vézelay. These … Continue reading

Episode 7 GOODfood+wine on World Radio Paris

by Host-Producer Paige Donner In our July episode of Paris GOODfood+wine for this season one, we bring you a nice medley of food, wine and the luxury lifestyle. First up, I sit down with Thomas Lignier, Brand Ambassador for the … Continue reading

What Tops Wine Tasting in Pauillac & Pomerol…?

by Paige Donner What Tops Wine Tasting in Pauillac & Pomerol…? Wine tasting with Dad in Pauillac and Pomerol! FULL SLIDESHOW of BOTH CHATEAUX HERE   (All photos by Paige Donner © 2015) These two châteaus, Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de … Continue reading

Checking In With Bordeaux’s Cité des Civilisations du Vin

by Paige Donner It’s always a thrill to watch the development, the progressive, step-by-step development of an ambitious and culturally iconic project. Such is the case with the Cité des Civilisations du Vin gorgeously taking shape along the banks of … Continue reading

on iTunes – Paris GOODfood+wine hosted by Paige Donner

Get The APP #ParisFoodAndWine in the App Store. Click HERE by Paige Donner The first episode of Paris GOODfood+wine was aired, as scheduled, on January 11th. What could never have been foreseen is the tragedy that happened just days prior, … Continue reading

Food Books by French Authors Make Good Gifts

Author’s note: as a stunning example of the cultural communications chasm that still exists between France and the rest of the culinary world, imagine standing in a room of food and wine journalists at a chef’s book award event in France and having everyone swear to you that they’ve never heard of Zagat’s! No kidding. Continue reading

Dijon in Pictures

“La Chouette” the owl featured in a few of the photos. A visit to Dijon without finding La Chouette is not really a visit to Dijon. Continue reading

Hospices de Beaune 2014 Burgundy Wine Auction Breaks All Previous Records

by Paige Donner This year’s Hospices de Beaune wine auction, the celebrated annual Burgundy wine event, not only surpassed all previous record sales years, but surpassed it in spades !  Listen to my full report HERE at World of Wine on World … Continue reading

Sydney Sunshine and Hunter Valley Wineries

by Susie Edwardson (guest contributing writer) Is there anything better than guaranteed sunshine and countless rows of vineyards laid out before you, all just waiting for their unique, lovingly produced wines to be tasted? With its next door neighbour New … Continue reading

SPIT – Science Politique International Tasting (Competition)

by Paige Donner In a truly wonderful demonstration of Bollinger’s credo, Life Can Be Perfect (with Bollinger), the day of the SPIT competition unfolded delightfully in Aÿ, France… All photos by Paige Donner copyright 2014  SPIT competing schools this year … Continue reading

World Radio Paris – Paris GOODfood+wine & World of Wine hosted by Paige Donner

World Radio Paris WRP is Paris’s first-ever all-English radio station broadcasting 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Editorial Update March 1st 2015:  World of Wine, the five minute weekly program I hosted about wine is now folded into … Continue reading

China Leads World In Red Wine Consumption

  According to the market survey commissioned by Vinexpo, the international wine and spirits exhibition, whose Asian show is to be held from 27 to 29 May this year in Hong Kong, China has become the world’s largest red wine consuming nation … Continue reading

Champagne Travel At Harvest Time

by Paige Donner All photos copyright Paige Donner 2013 All Rights Reserved Paige is the host of World of Wine radio program on WorldRadioParis. Planning a trip through Champagne during harvest time might at first feel like mission impossible, but if … Continue reading

Burgundy Preview Harvest 2013

by Paige Donner (translated from French) Roland Masse : « For both reds and the whites, the balance between sugar/acid is excellent. There’s a relative consistency among the whites, with good maturity and an aromatic freshness thanks to the natural acid. The … Continue reading

Limoux, Family Guinot and A Brief History of Bubbly

« Do bubbles have a flavor ? Better to ask whether angels are male or female ? » –         Pierre Casamayor, L’Ecole de Degustation   by Paige Donner The historical regions in France that have produced effervescent wines for … Continue reading

Paris’s Le Balm and Brooklyn Diner

re-published from Bonjour Paris Le Balm and Le Brooklyn Diner By Paige Donner Le Balm. An unusual name for a Parisian restaurant you might think.  However, as soon as you step inside this elegant new establishment in the shadows of … Continue reading

Napa Valley Film Festival – 3rd Annual

Napa, California, (September 18, 2013) – Napa Valley Film Festival (NVFF) Co-Founders and Directors Brenda and Marc Lhormer are proud to announce several of the festival’s star-studded headlining films, as well as the first set of honorees to be feted … Continue reading

Brunello di Montalcino – Mocali – 2007

Tuscany Food And Wine by LocalFoodAndWine.Wordpress.com

        Read More On Tuscany Food And Wine by Paige Donner Like any good California girl, I love me some Sangiovese.  So when I was able to get my hands recently on a bottle of the stuff … Continue reading

Chateau Mouton Rothschild – The New Museum and Cellars

Château Mouton Rothschild, June 16, 2013 Pauillac, Bordeaux by Paige Donner Photos by Paige Donner (and one by Anonymous Pirate Photographer) c. Paige Donner 2013   L’Art et L’Etiquette This is the title of the current exhibit at the new … Continue reading

Gold Coin Hidden Treasure Found In Champagne – Interview by Paige Donner

Lanson Found Gold Coin Treasure Champagne – Interview @LocalFoodWine Follow us On Tumblr * Follow Us On Twitter * Like Us On Facebook ♥Chérie Du Vin

Cite des Civilisations du Vin, Bordeaux Inauguration

“The building does not resemble any known shape because it’s an evocation. Not of wine itself, but of the soul of wine,” explain architects Anouk Legendre and Nicolas Desmazieres from French firm X-TU. When fully unveiled in 2016, the eco-building … Continue reading

Tuscany Food & Wine app by Acqua Panna

by Paige Donner Ahhh… summer is at long last nearly here. Dream vacation destinations are beginning to dance through our heads like sugar plum fairies in wispy toutous as the languid summer months of promised sunshine begin to magically reveal … Continue reading

I Am Soooo Grapeful

by Paige Donner One of the best wine salons of France, Le Salon du Vin put on by La Revue du Vin de France, takes place annually right around my birthday. To be perfectly honest, there’s really no better way to celebrate the bittersweet passing … Continue reading

Vines Resort & Spa Argentina

Scheduled to open September 2013, this All Luxury resort at the foothills of the Andes has a full sustainability agenda. Listen to what Frances Lalas has to say about guiding the resort’s grounding in sustainable development on Green Is Good … Continue reading

Burgundy – Science And Wine, A Center of Excellence in Bourgogne

reposted from Bourgogne-Wines.com Editorial SCIENCE AND WINE: A CENTER OF EXCELLENCE IN BOURGOGNE A major new step in scientific research into Bourgogne wines has just been taken. The University of Bourgogne, in conjunction with the Regional Council, is creating a … Continue reading

Panda Bears And The Climactic Re-zoning of Wine Regions

by Paige Donner What do panda bears and wine have to do with one another? Now that’s a question I never imagined I’d be posing here on myLocal Food And Wine blog. But, according to the recently released (April 8th, … Continue reading

Cristal Vibrations

  by Paige Donner This title actually began as a chapter heading for my journal entry about my visit to Champagne Louis Roederer in Reims. But I liked it so much that I’m using it here, too. It just works so beautifully. It … Continue reading

Napa March And April Events – Art and Taste of Yountville

With Spring just around the corner, the itch to get outdoors is growing stronger day by day. It’s easy to imagine how the grapevines must be feeling ’round about now… ready to burst forth and get busy bathing their buds … Continue reading

Support The Film!… Win A Wine Vacation

As a Thank You we’re offering you a Bonus Perk.  We’re optimistic that we’ll reach our film production fundraising goal for Wine & Climate Change, but we can’t do it without people like you.  Word-of-mouth and shared links have really … Continue reading

Madame Champagne Duval-Leroy

by Paige Donner Upon closer examination, you will find many extra-ordinary elements to the Champagne House Duval-Leroy. For starters, there are the champagnes. In Wine Spectator’s Top 100 list of 2008, their Brut NV was the only champagne to make … Continue reading

Champagne Ernest Remy

♥Chérie Du Vin. You will LOVE my wine picks!

If you ever find yourself for a day, or, better yet, a weekend, in Champagne during the Autumn season, use this as a sample daytripping itinerary and you won’t go wrong. Make your main destination Champagne Ernest Remy which is … Continue reading

Cognac Charity Auction Raises €136,800 ($177,046)

Chateau Chesnel Local Food And Wine

[From Press Release] The prestigious annual Cognac Awards were presented before the auction, going to two Americans. Ann Tuennerman, Founder of Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans, was presented with “Cognac Personality of the Year Award”, and acclaimed spirits … Continue reading

Saint-Emilion Wines 2012 Classification

by Paige Donner   [First Published on Technorati] Just released is the new 2012 Saint-Emilion Classification which ranks 82 of the most respected chateaux and wineries of Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux. Four made it into the Premier Grand Cru Classé A rank: … Continue reading

Gosset Champagne

by Paige Donner

There are two new exciting developments at Gosset Champagne. The first is its “new” cellars and the second is its brand new eco-friendly bottle labels.

Gosset Champagne Cellars Epernay c. Paige Donner Local Food And Wine

Gosset Champagne Epernay Cellars

For the “oldest wine house” (est. 1584)  in Champagne to expand much of their operations to Epernay from Aÿ, is no small feat.  It’s also not as if there are exquisite champagne cellars up for sale every day in Epernay. Most of the cellars in this quaint little Capitale du Champagne have been inhabited for centuries and mostly by the really big boys, you know the ones, the household name champagnes. Continue reading

California Wine Month – September

Califwinemonthtopbanner2012local_food_and_wine

Join the California Wine Institute and Girl Meets Grape at The Peninsula Hotel in Beverly Hills on Thursday, September 6th from 6-9 pm and taste your way around the state (70+ wineries! – see below) as we kick off California Wine Month 2012.

More Info: http://discovercaliforniawines.com/californiawinemonth

Valet parking is included with ticket price and tickets are extremely limited. Do not miss this opportunity to celebrate California wine without leaving LA!

Heitz – Ovid – Baldacci – Trefethen – Viader – Kenefick Ranch – Kenwood Vineyards – Wrath – Bernardus – Pianetta – J. Lohr – Noble Vines – Ventana Vineyards – McCay Cellars – Machhia – Borra Vineyards – Talley – Saucelito Canyon – Laetitia – Ancient Peaks – Tangent – Zocker – Santa Cruz Mountain – Cooper-Garrod – Bargetto – Beauregard Vineyards – Silver Mountain – Woodside – Villa Creek – Adelaida – Eberle – Hope Family – Justin – Tablas Creek – Villa Creek – Brewer-Clifton – Foxen – Margerum – Buttonwood Farm – Grassini Family – Riverbench Vineyard & Winery – Balletto – Davis Bynum – Alexander Valley Vineyards – Chateau St Jean – Landmark – Quivara – Etude – J Vineyards and Winery – The Lucas Winery – Heritage Oak Winery – Michael David Winery – St. Amant Winery – Joel Gott – Rosa d’Oro – Six Sigma – The Steven Kent Winery – Mitchell Katz – Wente – Cedar Mountain – Concannon Winery – Fenestra Winery – Baily – Palumbo Family – Monte de Oro – Robert Renzoni – South Coast – Wilson Creek – Bonterra – Beringer Vineyards – Robert Mondavi Winery

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@♥Chérie Du Vin

Maison J. De Telmont

by Paige Donner

The J. De Telmont House of Champagne located in Damery, France counts itself among the major twenty champagne houses of the region. Considering the players who are on that team, this is no small accomplishment for a family-owned and still family-run Champagne House.

See More PHOTOS On Chérie Du Vin ♥

Maison J. De Telmont Photo by Paige Donner c. Local Food And Wine

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Twenty-six Exceptional Cognacs For Auction at La Part des Anges 2012

Cognac Under The Hammer For Charity
26 Unique Cognacs To Be Auctioned in 7th Annual La Part des Anges Auction

Solidarity and generosity will be the watchwords for the seventh annual La Part des Anges Cognac charity auction, to be held on Thursday September 20th, 2012, at the magnificent 17th Century Château Chesnel on the banks of the Charente River, near Cognac.

Since 2005, the Part des Anges charity auction has become an important date in every Cognac lover’s calendar, not only as an opportunity to acquire exceptional and unique bottles, donated by Cognac houses, but also to share in an event that brings together all of the players in Cognac production – cellar masters, growers, distillers, coopers and glass makers.

26 Legendary Lots
The Part des Anges auction has become one of France’s biggest and most prestigious charity auctions. Over the past six years it has raised €300,000 for charity, and hopes are high that last year’s highest bid of €15,000 will be topped.
26 bottles, all chosen for their exceptional quality and rarity, will make up the sale. Many are unique and in stunning presentation carafes created especially for the auction.

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OenoPass Champagne France

by Paige Donner

Article first published as OenoPass Champagne France on Technorati.

Just launched last week by France’s Champagne region is the wine tourist friendly OenoPass. Think of it as an amusement park pass that you pre-pay where the attractions are picturesque champagne houses and working wineries as well as Champagne cultural points of interest.

From now until the end of 2012, the OenoPass is also a great bargain. For 50Euros (instead of the regular price of 100Euros) you get 10 ticket coupons which allow you entry, most of them accompanied by a champagne tasting, into all ten participating partner venues.

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De Vinis Illustribus, Paris

by Paige Donner

Tucked practically underneath Paris’s Pantheon is the 17th c. cellar and mythical wine shop, De Vinis Illustribus.  When current owners, husband and wife Lionel and Dominique Michelin, took over the cellars in 1994 from the legendary Jean-Baptiste Besse, a wine lover and connoisseur who welcomed the likes of Papa Hemingway to his shop back in the day, it looked nothing like it does now.

Read my Review on BlackBook City Guides HERE

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Grands Jours de Bourgogne 2012

[Press Release]

Last Thursday at Château du Clos de Vougeot, the GJB Association – and through it the entire regional wine industry – presented awards to a journalist, a photographer, and a television show for their pedagogical work highlighting the Burgundy wine culture. This was an opportunity to acknowledge the importance of these professions and the difficulties they often encounter.

Grandsjoursbourgogne_-_local_food_and_wine_pic_by_jean-louis_bernuy

Three Press Trophy Winners! Crédit photo : Jean-Louis Bernuy

Another success for the GJB – last week, this 11th edition brought together the trade from around the world (2,200). With 5% increased attendance compared to 2010 – an overwhelming endorsement for the show providing an opportunity for the trade to taste the wines in the heart of the region that brought them into being.

This success seems to confirm the upturn in 2011, in particular marked by strong growth in export sales (+16.5%). At €666.5 million, this is the 2nd best result, in terms of value, in Burgundy’s history. While Europe is stagnating, the U.S. is becoming the number 1 export market (+33% in value and +19% by volume) and the China-Hong Kong duo is approaching the Top 5 (doubling sales to €34 million). In Japan, where the strong yen has boosted exports, Burgundies have exceeded their peak value by more than 10% (+20% to €85 million).

It is in this context that Pierre-Henry Gagey, Chairman of the Burgundy Wine Board (BIVB), honored the Press Trophy winners, hailing those without whom “our wines would not have acquired their international reputation.”

Grands Jours de Bourgogne 2012 – A few figures :

  • ”  2,200 visitors, +5% compared to 2010

  • ”  10,274 of total admissions, an average of +20% of visitors per event

  • ”  More than 1,000 new contacts recorded during pre-registration

  • ”  42% of French (45% in 2010) and 58% foreign visitors (55% in 2010)

  • ”  44 different countries were represented with first visit from people coming from New Zealand, Chile, Argentina, Seychelles, Mexico, Finland, Slovakia and Lebanon

Yukino Kano, Japan, received the trophy for the “Press Article” category for her special feature entitled “Les Terres de l’épopée [The land of the epic tale],” published in December 2011 Japanese magazine Nile’s Nile. The jury of professionals and journalists especially enjoyed this feature’s poetic and very educational aspects evoking the lands and history of Côtes de Beaune and de Nuits.

A native Burgundian was awarded the first trophy for the “Photography” category (new for this edition). Armelle Hudelot was recognized for her catalog dedicated to the Burgundy Vineyard Climats, published in 2010. The jury was touched by the aesthetics and attention to detail transcribing the diversity of elements that make the mosaic of Burgundy Climats unique in the world.

Exceptionally this year, the jury wanted to commend France 3 Bourgogne’s TV initiative, by awarding a special prize for the program “Millésime.” Broadcast once a month on Sunday at 11 a.m., it explores the wine-making world through current topics (harvest, vinification, Climats, discovering professions, food and wine, exploring appellations…). As he presented the award to Muriel Bessard, the show’s creator, and Jean-Pierre Stucki, France 3 Bourgogne TV Director, Pierre-Henry Gagey explained this decision: “This choice – in French public television – is an act of courage, given the vigilance of some and the difficulties caused by the Evin law and jurisprudence.”

The GJB came to an end on Saturday in the sun with the Chevaliers du Tastevin’s Spring Tastevinage.

Mark your calendars now for the GJB’s 12th edition in 2014!

Bordeaux Primeurs Explained – Interview with Sylvie Cazes by Paige Donner

Bordeaux En Primeurs Explained – Interview with Sylvie Cazes by Paige Donner from Local Food And Wine on Vimeo. Sylvie Cazes explains the unique Bordeaux tradition of En Primeurs, or “wine futures”; She also talks a bit about the annual Marathon du Médoc. … Continue reading

Notes From Burgundy

[From Bourgogne Newsletter]

BURGUNDY WINE SCHOOL

BURGUNDY_WINE_SCHOOL

BURGUNDY WINE SCHOOL
For full details see ecoledesvins-bourgogne.comThe Wine School’s programme

The Burgundy Wine School has launched its 2012 programme. This year is likely to be a full one, as it includes three new features: sessions on food and wine pairing with Burgundy wines; sessions in English in September and October and the organisation of a 3-day programme (in English) as part of the Hospices de Beaune wine auction.

These new offerings will be added to the rich catalogue of around sixty training courses aimed at the general public, not to mention the “Coaching” and “Tailor-made services” (from 3 hours to several days) set up by the School.

The Wine School also manages the Aroma Cellars, with around fifty exhibitions per year. In 2011, 2,550 people attended training courses at the Burgundy Wine School and gave it an average score of 17.6 out of 20.

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Cognac For ♥ Valentine’s Day

Cognac for the most important ♥ holiday of the year!? Yes! And not just for your fella, but for your Lady (love) as well. 

Scenes from Cognac

 all photos by and c. Paige Donner 2012 

Click Here for Slideshow Hennessy, Courvoisier, Remy Martin and Paul Giraud (in that order)

Women love things that are smooth, warm, that glide just the right way and yet still have that appropriate touch of femininity. You might think that I’m describing lovely lingerie. But, No! I’m talking about cognac. That’s right!  Cognac can be YOUR dreamy passport to love and pleasure this Valentine’s Day!

On a recent trip to Cognac, I was tasked with spitting out X.O. and Paradis…From all the best makers… Some that you’ve no doubt heard of and some that you’ll only hear about and get to taste if you venture into the quaint and cordial hinterland of France that is Cognac.

Click Here for Slideshow Hennessy, Courvoisier, Remy Martin and Paul Giraud (in that order)  Continue reading

The Wine Yacht

“We wanted to put our own unique spin on traditional food and wine pairing concepts” says Chef Natasha Harris. “Clients who book the yacht will be able to show their guests Vancouver from a new perspective, while learning about interesting wine and food combinations using local ingredients. It’s a great opportunity to showcase our city and what we are privileged to have here.” 

Created by Sunset Bay’s ISG accredited Executive Chef Natasha Harris, The Wine Yacht’s interactive group tasting sessions are designed to provide clients with an informative and unique custom tasting event while on board the “Sunset Bay II” private yacht. Each tasting station features premium wine varietals from BC and around the world, paired with small plates inspired by the corresponding wine’s region.

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St. Emilion Jurade Inductee Henri Leconte Interview by Paige Donner Local Food And Wine TV

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St. Emilion Jurade, Jean-Francois Quenin, Interview by Paige Donner, Local Food And Wine TV

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Commanderie du Bontemps 20 Sur Vin Wine Tasting Competition

[Press Release] Bordeaux, September 2011 January- June 2012 The 11th event of the “20 sur vin” Wine Tasting Competition for international wine clubs of leading business schools, higher education establishments and universities. After the great success in 2011 with the presence of the United … Continue reading

Bordeaux – Left Bank, Right Bank

By Paige Donner For most of us wine lovers, the word Bordeaux evokes Mecca-like dreams and memories of some of the world’s best and most prestigious wines. For the Bordelais, there is a pronounced distinction between “Left Bank” and “Right … Continue reading

Clos Lanson Champagne Harvest

by Paige Donner 

After nearly 40 years with the House of Champagne Lanson, Reims, winemaker Jean Paul Gandon is not afraid of innovation. That is, innovation when it stays within the context of tradition. Gandon and Champagne Lanson enjoy a singularly unique relationship in Champagne insofar as next year, when he celebrates his 40th year with the house, it will be the longest standing winemaker-to-winery relationship in this very exclusive region of France.

Jean Paul Gandon, Clos Lanson [Far Left]Jean Paul Gandon, Clos Lanson - Local Food And Wine

Gandon, Far Left

Gandon, Enguerrand Lanson Tasting Room, Reims - Local Food And Wine

Gandon, Enguerrand Baijot - Lanson Tasting Room, Reims - Local Food And Wine

Clos Lanson is one enclosed hectare of Chardonnay vines that grows grapes bursting with fruit and juice, if this past weekend’s harvest in Reims offers any evidence. The Clos is also singularly unique in Reims as it is the only enclosed hectare of vines growing within the city center. Beyond its walls are straight views onto the Reims Cathedral and the Stadium.

Harvest at Clos Lanson, Reims - Local Food And Wine

Harvest at Clos Lanson, Reims - Local Food And Wine

During one day each year family members, employees and friends of Lanson Champagne assemble for a spectacular day of convivial harvesting and celebration of what will be the most exclusive of Lanson Champagne cuvées, the Clos Lanson. This celebratory harvest and Cuvée of no more than 8,500 bottles was  the brain child of Gandon and one of the owners of Lanson International, Philippe Baijot, 6 years ago. This year will mark the first that the champagne will be available to taste and to drink.

Philippe Baijot, Champagne Lanson, - Local Food And Wine

Philippe Baijot, Champagne Lanson, - Local Food And Wine

Lanson Champagne Cave - Local Food And Wine

Lanson Champagne Cave - Local Food And Wine

Champagne Lanson is most well-known for its power of the Pinot Noir grape, its blocking of malolactic fermentation during its vinification and its cellaring of at least 36 months prior to release. (AOC Champagne regulations require 15 mos. minimum). Wine connoisseurs speak of keeping the Black Label Lanson for 10 years. In other words, this is not a “pop and pour” champagne.

Champagne Lanson was founded in 1760 by Francois Delamotte which makes it the fourth oldest house in the world. During its changing of hands in the last several decades, “…vintages of Lanson remained of high quality… Much of this success in the face of adversity must be down to Gandon.”

Launched in 2011 is Lanson’s L’Académie de Lanson  and its Little Black Book of Champagne. The House believes strongly in viewing champagne as a wine and not purely as a label. The Lanson Academy was developed to engage and enlighten all champagne drinkers.  –    ♥Chérie Du Vin

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Obernai, Its Le Parc And Its Vineyards

By Paige Donner

Obernai is the exquisite gem of a village on the famous Alsace Wine Road. If you have two days in which to explore Alsace, I recommend that you hop on the TGV from Paris, do a quick change in Strasbourg and continue onto Obernai on one of the regional trains for another 30 minutes.

Obernai from Above - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Obernai from Above - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Obernai and its Vineyards - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Obernai and its Vineyards - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Disembark in Obernai and then park yourself at the 4-Star Le Parc Hotel, the haven of VIP service and quiet tranquility that awaits you at the top of the village. If you are so predisposed, you needn’t budge from this spot as the resort has an indoor and an outdoor pool, two restaurants, both gastronomic quality, a cigar and rum lounge, a stylish bar, a bowling alley, a breakfast room and one of the best spas – the Asiane Spa – not just in Alsace but in France. There’s even a winery right next door that sells cold bottles of Gewürztraminer, Cremant d’Alsace and Riesling, as well as regional specialties like Kirschwasser, Salted Caramel Liqueur and fine regional patés.

Le Parc Hotel Obernai, Alsace - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Le Parc Hotel Obernai, Alsace - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

l'Hotel Le Parc Obernai, Restaurant La Stub - photo courtesy Le Parc Obernai

l'Hotel Le Parc Obernai, Restaurant La Stub - photo courtesy Le Parc Obernai

Hotel Le Parc's Obernai (****) Rum and Cigar Lounge, Alsace - photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Hotel Le Parc's Obernai (****) Rum and Cigar Lounge, Alsace - photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Vineyards of Obernai

But if you do feel like venturing farther, an early morning walk, when the air is still fresh and cool, up Mt. St. Odile through the Schenkenberg, will have you walking through vineyards of Pinot Gris and Riesling. You will be rewarded with a magnificent view over Obernai that stretches all the way to several of the neighboring towns on the Wine Route.

Obernai's Oldest Butcher Shop, Alsace - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Obernai's Oldest Butcher Shop, Alsace - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Winery and Wine Shop next to Le Parc Hotel, Obernai, Alsace - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

Winery and Wine Shop next to Le Parc Hotel, Obernai, Alsace - Local Food And Wine photo by Paige Donner c. 2011

For Oenotourists, you have several options: Either let the extraordinarily gracious staff at l’Hotel Le Parc (****) make a few phone calls to their winery friends to set up tasting appointments for you – recommended if you have your own car or a rented one. Or you can wander over towards the Tourism Office where you will find a sign that maps the wineries right in Obernai, all within walking distance.  You can stop by for a tasting and pick up some of that Pinot Gris and Gewürztraminer before heading back to your hotel for an afternoon lazing by the pool and drinking outstanding Alsacian wine. Top your day off with a gastronomic dinner at Le Parc’s La Table accompanied by haute cuisine service. Paradise found…in Alsace.

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Gerard Bertrand’s Jazz Fest Weekend, Sud de France [Slideshow]

All photos by Paige Donner c. 2011.

The Gérard Bertrand annual Jazz Fest took place August 4th – 8th this summer at Château l’Hospitalet just outside Narbonne.  These photos are taken at Château l’Hospitalet in Languedoc-Roussillon, “Sud de France.”

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To read more about Gérard Bertrand wines, his annual summer Jazz Fest and his L’Art de Vivre Les Vins Du Sud, click on Gerard-Bertrand.com.

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Jaillance Cork Recycling Initiative

By Paige Donner

Jaillance produces the only sparkling wine from France’s Rhône Valley. They call it their “Clairette de Die” and its 7% alcohol content makes it a festive choice for most all occasions. Their rosé, the Cuvée de l’Abbaye, is made from 100% merlot and their “Cremant de Bordeaux” is 70% semillon and 30% cabernet franc.

Jaillance - Local Food And Wine

Jaillance committed to organic farming in 1989 and has more than 200 growers in their winegrowers’ “cooperatif.” They take their commitment to sustainable winemaking seriously… far beyond simply changing out their bottles to the lighter 775gr. from the heavier 830 gr. champagne bottle. Take their cork recycling initiative for instance…

Did You Know?

  • 12 billion corks are manufactured every year. 3 billion of those are destined for France alone!
  • The cork oak tree does not die when its bark is harvested. The bark gradually grows back, like shedding its skin.
  • Cork Oak trees can get up to 300 years old and grow a thick new layer of bark every nine years.
  • 100% of harvested cork is used.
  • Cork oak forests have great ecological value, sustaining a rich level of biodiversity and protecting many species of fauna and flora.
  • A harvested cork oak tree absorbs 2 1/2 to 4 times as much CO2 as one not harvested.

Jaillance’s Cork Recycling Initiative: How It Works

Jaillance Clairette de Die - Local Food And WineStarting this summer Jaillance is calling on their consumers to save and collect their corks and bring them back to designated collection points. These collection points La Cave de Die Jaillance, Jaillance sales outlets and all Gamm Vert Shops (France).

These used corks will be sold back to to the cork industry, and the money sent to the Institut Mediterranéen du Liège (Mediterranean Cork Institute). The Institute will use the funds to plant more cork oaks in the Eastern Pyrenees forests.

Once the wine corks have been collected, the wine corks are taken to a recycling plant to be transformed into floor coverings, decorative items, components for the aerospace and automobile industries – or even into electrical power.

Cork is 100% natural and 100% recyclable.  It is one of nature’s treasures.

To Read More about Jaillance and their Sustainability programs, including their Solar Panel Initiative, Click Here…

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Le Baron Rouge

by Paige Donner

As wine bars in Paris go, this is both authentic and on the beaten path.  For years, whenever you’d search out wine bars and Paris, it is this one that would come up. It is nestled right next to the famous (and super cheap!) Marché d’Aligre.

Le Baron Rouge, Local Food And Wine Culinary Tastings

Which is a good thing. Because after – or before – you buy your fresh cheeses, your ripe fruits, and your roasted chicken, you can buy your wine by the liter and enjoy a glass of it while doing so.  And yes, you buy your liter of wine straight from the barrel.

Le Baron Rouge. It’s a bit on the beaten track but every bit worthy of a drop-in.  Plus, what better way to start off a Sunday morning but with a glass of good, country, French wine?

Contact Local Food And Wine for our Culinary Tours and Rates.

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The Men of Vinexpo, France’s Biannual Wine Bonanza

By Paige Donner Read Complete Article on Black Book Magazine A biannual affair, France’s monumental, just-wrapped Vinexpo Bordeaux has, once again, firmly established itself as the world’s leading exhibition for the wine industry. A few numbers: there were approximately 50,000 … Continue reading

Monaco Royal Wedding Chooses Local Cuisine

2010-11-19-14-19-47-2-prince-albert-ii-of-monaco-and-lady-charlene-witts

It was in the kitchens of the Louis XV in the Hôtel de Paris, along with the executive chef of the kitchens of the hotel, Franck Cerutti, that Alain Ducasse received the confirmation from the Palace.

«H.S.H Prince Albert IIand Miss Wittstock’s decision honours me. It honours also Mediterranean cuisine,a sincere and fair cuisine that pays tribute to a rich and generous land. A cuisine that is respectful of its environment. Prince Albert and his future wife have thus expressed their attachment to nature and to the attentive work of the men and women who wisely nurture it. On this very special day, I cannot help myself remembering with emotion the tasty moments the Prince spent with his family at our table.

Monegasque since 2008, it was in 1987 that Alain Ducasse discovered Monaco,when Prince Rainier III called upon him to take over the direction of the kitchens of the Hôtel de Paris, Monte-Carlo SBM’s prestigious establishment, with the mission to make the Louis XV the first hotel restaurant awarded three Michelin stars, a distinction that was granted in 1990. Located between Nice and Liguria, it is at the Louis XV that Alain Ducasse brings cachet to Mediterranean cuisine. A cuisine of freedom, of emotions and of passion but also of rigor, sobriety and method; it gives the best role to each ingredient -from the modest vegetable garden plant to the most sumptuous crustacean- for the greater pleasure of the senses. At the very heart of this Mediterranean soil that so inspires him, he has found, in twenty-five years of professional partnership and personal implication, a staunch support. Today, Monaco is the essential anchor point in his profession as chef-creator. From the Louis XV, he trains most of his chefs, the very same ones who then carry his work across the globe.

The Princely wedding dinner, held on the terraces of the Salle Garnier, will be executed from the kitchens of the Louis XV at the Hotel de Paris, with the support of a temporary kitchen located on the site. As for the theme of the dinner, Alain Ducasse simply states that he will work along side his team in the highest respect of a nature that today, we realise is weakened. It will combine the essence of taste -with emphasis on local produce- with the sober elegance of the tableware. On this subject, he notes with a smile, that the garden and the cows of Rocagel, Prince Albert’s property, will be involved in the menu. Indeed, the former will supply the vegetables, while the latter will provide milk for the dessert. The dinner prepared by Alain Ducasse with the full commitment of the employees of Monte-Carlo SBM establishments, will contribute in making the event a simple and warm moment for all the guests, as was requested by H.S.H Prince Albert II and Miss Wittstock. [Press Release]

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